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AjoOldTimer's picture
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Location: Ajo, Arizona
Joined: 07/09/2010
Posts: 66
Reminds me of the movie last

Reminds me of the movie last of the dogmen but with the grizzly

WesternHunter's picture
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Funny

It really does!  Except I think the possibility of Grizzlies existing in Colorado is much more likely than primative indian tribes still roaming around.  All I know is that some sighting come from very credible hunters and others naturalists.  Especially the sighting in Independence Pass in 2006.  Even the DoW deemed that one worthy of further investigation.  Then again Coloradoans lived through the 1950's, 1960's and most of the 1970's thinking the Grizzly was extinct in the state until 1979 when we got a real surprise.  Like I said before - take a look at the CDoW wildlife identification booklet.  It show the Grizzly only as endangered in the state.  I believe the DoW knows more than they want to publically admit.

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Location: Western Colorado
Joined: 03/26/2009
Posts: 3951
Sooner or later another one

Sooner or later another one will pop up somewhere here in Colorado.  I remember in the early 80's one was killed by a car on I-80 in Utah.  The DOW there never admitted it but I saw the carcus on the side of the road before they hauled it off and it was deffintly was a Grizzly.  I have even seen tracks of one that I believe was a Grizzly in the Book Cliffs in eastern Utah in a mud puddle.  He had been there less than 5 minutes when I saw them.  It made the hair on the back of my neck stand up a little since I did not have a rifle with me that day. 

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Joined: 12/23/2009
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Colorado Grizzly's

I'm heading down this weekend to camp on Cumbres pass.  I'll have my camera and bino's I hope I'll see something.  I'm going to visit the area where chama lake is in the Ghost Grizzlies book.  Yeah I know where it is!  It's not actually called Chama lake.

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I love this stuff. Fondest

I love this stuff. Fondest dream of an old mtn goat here is to get a pic of a grizzer and the bigfoots in unit  71.

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Colorado Grizzly Bears

Hello...I am new to this board. I was doing some research online in regard to Colorado Grizzly bears after a sighting on 7/31 and came across this forum. My friend Alan and I were near Cimarron visiting friends and decided to go fishing at Silverjack Reservoir and the Big Cimarron river. We made a wrong turn on little Cimarron road and headed over 25 miles. We saw a large bear cross the road right in front of us moving very fast. This bear made us both think it could be a Grizzly. It was Cinnamon colored but had longer hair that looked frazzled. It had a large hump on it's upper back. It's front legs appeared longer. If I had to guess, it was young...perhaps 250-300 lbs. I am no expert, but have seen both black bears and Grizzlies in Montana and Wyoming. Alan has seen many in Alaska. To make this mistaken trip even more bizarre...we also saw many turkey including one with 11 babies. We saw bucks (6) bedded down together. We ended up on top of a mountain (road is not for the faint at heart) and on top, we saw a white wolf. It truly felt as though we entered another world. We met an elderly mn on top who owns an A-frame with a teepee. He told us he has never seen a Grizzly, but neighbors have. He confirmed that 2 wolfpacks roam this area and one has a white wolf, which he has seen before. We also saw very large bear tracks at Silverjack where the river spills. All with claws...Who knows...we were very lucky to see all of that...wish I could have got a picture for you

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Joined: 12/23/2009
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Colorado Grizzlies

Hey, Cobby that's very interesting.  I've been leisurely chasing Colorado Grizzlies sighings when I can.  It's easy to differentiate a Grizzly track from a black bear track.  The toe pads of the front paw go straight across no arc.  The opposite is true of black bears.  Also the claws of a Grizzly bear are usually 2-4 inches long.  I would'nt be surprised to see a grizzly bear turn up darn near anywhere here in Colorado.  That includes the front range.  Grizzlies are roamers and need room to roam.  They do not recognize mountain ranges as boundary's like some bear huggers have been saying.  The San Juans are more remote and larger then any other mountain range here in Colorado.  I've been looking for Grizzlies here in Colorado for a long time.  I've never seen a track or animal that I could say without a doubt, that it was a Grizzly.  Just alot of hear say.  Now last year I hunted a ranch near lone cone on the western extreme of the San Juans.  The rancher had some incredible footage of bears that he gets every spring when the bears feed on his dead cow carcasses.  The footage he said was compiled over years of tending to cows and having a video camera with him.  He had some footage of black bears that were the same color as a steriotypical grizzly bear, and let me tell you they were enormous 500-600 lb. blackies.  I asked him if he ever saw what he thought was a Grizz.  He said quote he thinks he seen one and had it on tape.  He said it was buried in his film somewhere or he would've shown it to me.  Now a guy that looks at bears and gets very close to them all the time like he does, should know the difference!  He's got footage and pics of bears rearing up and fighting on their hind legs.  These were some big black bears.  So big and blonde you'd swear they were Grizzlies.  It may give some creedance to Grizzly/black bear hybrids.  Maybe when the Grizzly became scarce it bred with some blackies, and now that gene runs strong in their blood.  Maybe that's why out west we have more color phased black bears.  I do believe there are a few pure bread Grizzlies here in Colorado, and I mean natives Grizzlies.  Maybe 10-20 who knows for sure but few enough that they've stayed out of the bioligist's sights.  I do believe that Grizzlies will start to disperse out of the southern Wind River range and start showing up quietly in northern Colorado.  Just as the young male Wolverine M56 did last year.  It is very possible that a few Grizzly's have allready made the trip!

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Location: Front Range, CO
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San Juan Grizzlies

I thought I'd add my $0.02 worth on the topic.  First off, let me say that many of you make some very valid and observant points, and I would just like to add to those.

I am a professional Wildlife Biologist who has worked for both CDOW and the USFWS as well as other private companies.  During my 20+ year career, I have worked with grizzly bears in Alaska and Montana.  However, back in 1989, I was working for CDOW as an endangered species surveyor, looking for peregrine falcons in southern Colorado.  My partner and I were working in the upper headwaters of the Navajo River, just across the Continental Divide from where the last grizzly was killed 10 years earlier, on a private piece of land, then owned by the Banded Peaks Ranch.  My partner had gone to check another cliff in the immediate area, while I finished up at my cliff.  As it started to rain, my partner came running out of the woods claiming he had seen a grizzly.  We quickly went back to the location where he had seen the bear, but unfortunately it was gone.  However, we were able to get a couple of pictures of the tracks as they filled up with rain.  These pictures had items in them that could be used as a size reference.

What I must add is that my partner was a PhD biologist who had done his Masters and Doctorate on grizzlies in Yellowstone NP under the direction of known grizzly expert Barry Gilbert out of Utah State.  So this was guy who knew grizzlies up close and personal.

When we got back to our office a few days later in Gunnison (the headquarters for the peregrine work), we notified the correct people within CDOW (Durango Office) of what had happened and later turned over the photos of the tracks.  In the end, no one at CDOW told us that there were no grizzly bears in Colorado.  Instead what they told us was that they would file the report, yet nothing would be done about it due to a few things.  First, CDOW did not want the publicity, because with the publicity comes the urging of the environmental community to protect the entire forest, or the agricultural community to quickly control this population so there would be no loss fo livestock, or the hunting community to kill all of the bears before they kill all of the elk.  In the long run, the view point was this; there may be a few bears (offspring from the 1979 bears) left in the south San Juan's, genetically inbred, but surviving without any specific management directed at them.  Second, if the the public found out, the different outdoor communities, for what ever reason would be out in the woods looking to see/kill the bears.  Third, if positively identified, CDOW would have to spend a lot of money to come up with a management plan to protect them and on an already tight budget, they did not want to get in to that predicament.  Finally, if the bear(s) had survived since 1979, maybe it was best to just leave them alone.

That was the last I ever heard anything about that.  While it has been a long time since then, I still have a lot of good friends that fill the positions of habitat biologists, District Wildlife Managers etc in both CDOW and USFWS, as well as the USFS and BLM.  And out of the office and out of uniform, many of these people will tell me that they think there probabaly is a small remanent population (<10) of grizzlies in the southern Colorado/northern New Mexico area.

Let's just keep our fingers crossed!

Joined: 03/31/2012
Posts: 9
Colorado Grizzly Bears

Nearly the same experiences with Grizz and CDOW .  I'd like to share my photos of GRizz attack on a horse, Grizz attack on a cabin, Grizz prints and my GRizz plaster casts.  I can verify all of these as to Colordado Location.  For each 380 days I sleep on the ground I find positive evidence of Grizz in Colorado (San Juans).  Join me on future expiditions (backpacking and Horse packing-sleep on the ground).  The best time is April in the snow where no man has gone before.

WesternHunter's picture
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Good

Welcome to biggame hunt forum Cobby, Elk Slayer, and Douglasmtn.  I think the reasons that CDOW gave you Douglasmtn were pretty good reasons.  And it even strengthens my opinion that the CDOW has always known way more on the subject than they are willing to publically admit.  If it is a small remnant remaining from the cubs that Wismans sow left behind then they don't need to be managed.  Obviously if it is that small of a grizzly population there is little damage they can do and little they have done if any.  CDOW can worry about managing them when and if they become too numerous, if that small population even survives let alone thrives.